NY Times Letter: Absurd to include Rabin and Peres in article about Nobel "Mistakes"

To the Editor:

Re “Nobel Peace Prize: A Growing List of Questionable Choices” (Nov. 17):

Including former Israeli Prime Ministers Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres in an article about mistakes the Nobel Prize Committee has made over the years in awarding its peace prize is beyond absurd.

The other examples largely involve situations where award winners engaged in major human rights abuses or wars after receiving the prize, which legitimately raised questions about the awardee’s commitment to peace. Aung San Suu Kyi in Myanmar and Abiy Ahmed in Ethiopia are the most prominent examples.

In the cases of Rabin and Peres no such thing exists. Rabin was pursuing peace with the Palestinians when he was assassinated. And Peres did likewise, first as prime minister and then, for the rest of his distinguished career, in and out of office.

Your decision to include these two Israeli peacemakers in this article is particularly galling because you repeatedly editorialize about the need for a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians. These two Israeli leaders embodied that search for two states in the way no others have.

It is unfortunate that their vision has not been realized. As time passes, however, it is clear that Rabin and Peres represented everything that is right about the idea of a Nobel Peace Prize.

Sincerely,

Ken Jacobson
Deputy National Director
ADL (Anti-Defamation League)